DETROIT -- The Corvette Z06 could be one of the most sought-after cars in the 2006 model year. But Chevrolet dealers that sold only a handful of 2005 Corvettes may not share in the excitement this year.
"If a Chevrolet dealer sells one or two Corvettes a year, he may not earn one," said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet's director of car marketing. "It will be based on his (Corvette) sales history."
After being absent for one model year, the Z06 returns to the Corvette fold this fall. Annual production is expected to be limited to 4,000 to 5,000 units.
Said one unhappy dealer who sold several 2005 Corvettes but failed to make the allocation, "Who are they giving the cars to? How did they earn them?" He asked not to be identified.
Chevrolet is calling the 2006 Z06 the fastest Corvette ever built. The car has a 505-hp 7.0-liter V-8 with 470 pounds-feet of torque.
Chevrolet is touting 0-60 mph performance in 3.7 seconds - while in first gear. A top speed in excess of 190 mph is promised. That type of performance places the Z06 among exotic super cars costing hundreds of thousands of dollars each. But the Z06's sticker price will start at $65,800, including destination.
"It going to be a desirable car," said Dutch Mandel, editor of AutoWeek, a sister publication of Automotive News. "Any time Chevrolet comes out with a specialized Corvette, there is a hard core group of people who wants them."
Unlike previous Z06 models, this model was co-engineered alongside the Corvette C6.R race car.
Chevrolet dealers were given their six-month Z06 allocation in a letter sent June 15. The allocation covers the July 1 through Dec. 30 period. A letter will be sent in December giving dealers their allocation for January through April next year.
Campbell said "it is very possible" that some dealers who were skipped in the first allocation may be offered a Z06 in the second allocation.
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